Dream come true as Heysham’s Jack Senior seals spot at The Open

Jack Senior. Picture: Getty Images
Jack Senior. Picture: Getty Images

Jack Senior said qualifying for the Open Championship for the first time was the realisation of a childhood dream.

Heysham’s Challenge and European Tour professional sealed his spot in the world’s most famous tournament at Royal Troon from July 14 after coming top of final qualifying at Hillside Golf Club on Tuesday.

The 27-year-old produced a stunning final back nine, completing the last eight holes in six under par to finish on -5 three clear of the field after two rounds in Southport.

Senior said: “It’s the biggest golf tournament in the 
world.

“It’s what you play the game for. It’s what you put the pressure on yourself to do.

“As a kid on the putting green it would always be a put to win The Open.

“The amount of times I must have gone through that scenario.”

Having attempted to reach golf’s pinnacle event countless times down the years, sealing his spot was even sweeter for the former Walker Cup star after coming close 12 months ago.

Rounds of 69 and 70 look relatively straight forward for Senior on paper but it was a rollercoaster day by the sea, two double bogeys on the short 10th being mixed with an eagle and 10 birdies in his two rounds.

Senior said: “I was in a good position last year and that was a big thing for me.

“It stood me in good stead this time around.

“I double bogeyed 10 and though that was it but it allowed me to be aggressive off the tee at 11 and I got an eagle.

“Then I holed some really good puts.

“After last year’s experience I didn’t feel the pressure and just got the job done.

“Golf is very much a game of experience.

“Look at it week in, week out, the average age of winners on tour is 32 or 33.

“The more you’re put in these situations the better equipped you are to deal with them.”

It all culminated with four birdies in his final six holes with Senior believing having a score to target suited him down to the ground.

He said: “I seem to be a good runner from behind.

“You know what you’ve got to do.

“It can be hard to lead from the front because you don’t know quite what to do.

“From behind you just go out and try and beat that score.

“It focuses you a lot more where as if you’re in front and just start to play that bit conservatively you can make mistakes.”

Having immediately travelled to Demmark for the Challenge Tour’s Made in Denmark Challenge which starts on Thursday, Senior was keen to thank the team supporting him, particularly Heysham coach Ryan Done.

He said: “It’s not just me I’ve got a great team around me and they’ve been a massive help.

“The hours Ryan must have put in with me.

“He was on the range at 6.30 (at Hillside) going through a few things with me.

“I can’t thank him enough.”

Senior’s brother Joe finished tied for 37th on seven over par.

Lancaster amateur Jack Clarkson finished on six over par at the final qualifying event at the Gailes Links up in Scotland.